Double Trouble: Dr. Mehmet Oz and Turkey

A crucial Senate race is underway in Pennsylvania in the coming midterms: a cognitively impaired stroke victim vs. America’s celebrity Turk. In the following essay David Boyajian examines the unsavory connections between Dr. Mehmet Oz and Turkey.

Double Trouble: Dr. Mehmet Oz and Turkey

by David Boyajian

TV personality Dr. Mehmet Cengiz Oz is the Republican candidate for U.S. senator in Pennsylvania. He could become the first senator to hold dual citizenship, notably that of Turkey and America.

Which country does Oz owe his allegiance to? That’s what journalists and others have justifiably been asking.

It’s an important question, particularly as Turkey remains a rogue NATO member and unapologetically repressive and corrupt.

Moreover, Ankara has long supported international terrorist organizations such as ISIS.

Oz and Turkish Terrorism

Ahmet S. Yayla was Turkey’s counterterrorism chief from 2010-2013. He acknowledged in 2020 that “Turkey was a central hub for… over 50,000 ISIS foreign fighters, and the main source of ISIS logistical materials [including] IEDs [improvised explosive devices], making Turkey and ISIS practically allies.”

Terrorism expert/State Department adviser Dr. David L. Phillips directs Columbia University’s Peace-building and Human Rights Program. In Turkey: A State Sponsor of Terrorism? (2021), Phillips showed that if a “non-NATO country behaved like Turkey, it would warrant designation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism.”

Has Oz ever forthrightly condemned his country’s terrorism, repression, or corruption? Seemingly not.

Does Oz even care that Turkey sponsors ISIS and other terrorist organizations? I find no evidence of that.

Take his January 10, 2022 Washington Examiner op-ed. He expressed his “deep concerns about many of its [Turkey’s] authoritarian domestic policies and harmful foreign policies.”

Which “policies,” exactly? He didn’t say. I asked his campaign for examples. It hasn’t replied.

Moreover, Oz’s alleged “concerns,” as noted by the journalist Benjamin Baird, appeared only after the latter’s stinging, detailed, exposé of the doctor’s “many entanglements with Turkey’s government” (National Review, December 23, 2021).

Americans, said Baird in June, can rightly “question Oz’s loyalty and wonder why he wishes to prolong his allegiance to an oppressive authoritarian state.”

John Fetterman, Oz’s Democratic opponent, has failed to slam Oz on the above points, particularly his rival’s apparent indifference to Ankara’s support of terrorism.

Oz even claims he’s “never been politically involved in Turkey in any capacity” and doesn’t “really have a relationship with the leadership there [in Turkey].” Oh, is that so?

President Erdogan is Oz’s “Leader”

In a Turkish TV interview, the doctor said this after meeting President Erdogan: “I met with our leader in Turkey [emphasis added]. There is the question of how I can help Turkey as a representative [emphasis added].”

Oz served two months in the Turkish army and has extensive real estate holdings in Turkey. They include a $2 million dormitory leased at no cost to the regime’s Education Ministry.

When Oz announced his candidacy in 2021, Turkey’s U.S. Ambassador Hasan Murat Mercan immediately telephoned his congratulations.

The mega-millionaire candidate, incidentally, switched his voting address from his New Jersey mansion to his in-laws’ Pennsylvania home only in 2020.

Oz claims to maintain his Turkish citizenship only because his mother lives in Istanbul and has Alzheimer’s disease. Yet exiled Turkish journalist Abdullah Bozkurt points out that Oz could easily acquire a Turkish “Blue Card,” which confers most citizenship privileges.

In March, Oz stated that as a dual citizen senator he would forego asking for certain American security clearances. Now, though, he swears he’ll drop his Turkish citizenship — but only if elected.

Mike Pompeo, President Trump’s Secretary of State, has questioned why Oz had “the time and energy to vote in a [2018] Turkish election” but not in New Jersey’s 2018 primary. The candidate, added Pompeo, must detail the “scope and depth” of his relationship to Turkey because they raise “national security concerns.” He hasn’t done so.

Unfortunately, probably because Trump is absurdly pro-Turkish, he endorsed Oz.

The Doctor and Mass Murder

In 2019, U.S. Senate Resolution 150 passed 100-0. It recognized the genocides of “Armenians, Greeks, Assyrians… and other Christians” committed by Ottoman and post-Ottoman Turkey from 1915-1923.

Queried about the Armenian Genocide, Oz’s campaign shot back with this disingenuous generalization: Our candidate “opposes genocide and the murder of innocent people in all forms… the evils of World War I should be commemorated.”

Of course, few people publicly favor genocide, murder, and evil. Oz’s evasive non-answer places him again on Turkey’s side and at odds with the U.S. Senate.

The true intensity of the Oz-Turkish love affair is known to few Pennsylvania voters.

The Oz—Turkish Love Affair

Oz has been a consultant and publicist for Turkish Airlines, 49% owned by the Turkish government.

He was once elected to the High Advisory Council of the Istanbul-based World Turkish Business Council (DTiK). The latter is affiliated with Turkey’s Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEiK), an arm of President Erdogan’s regime.

Oz spoke at DTiK’s 2019 conference in NY City. It was co-hosted by Gunay Evinch.

Ankara hired Evinch’s law firm, Saltzman & Evinch, to collect intel on certain of Turkey’s critics in America.

Evinch co-chairs the Turkish American National Steering Committee (TASC) with Halil Mutlu, Erdogan’s cousin. In America, Mutlu represents Erdogan’s Islamist AKP party.

During a TASC fundraiser in 2019, Oz sat beside Murat Guzel, the event’s host and the subject of FBI financial investigations.

At a 2019 Turkish parade in Brooklyn, NY, Oz and Turkish Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gul embraced each other. In 2018, the U.S. Treasury Department penalized Gul for Ankara’s unjust detention of Andrew Brunson, an American Christian pastor.

Oz offers lifestyle programming on the BiP communications platform. BiP is owned by the Turkish Wealth Fund, headed by Erdogan himself.

In 2022, Enes Kanter Freedom, the NBA basketball star, former Turkish citizen, and Erdogan critic, tweeted:

“People in Pennsylvania needs [sic] to understand that [Dr. Oz] is a Foreign Agent and he works for Dictator [Erdogan]. Ask yourself, why would a Turkish citizen, who lives in Jersey and works in New York City would want to be the Senator from Pennsylvania [emphases added].”

Nice Guys Finish Last

In May’s GOP primary, Oz beat David McCormick by just 951 votes out of 1.3 million.

Had McCormick used the points above (some of which I gave to his campaign and another GOP contender, Kathy Barnette) to hammer Oz, he would have won.

If John Fetterman lacks the stomach to expose the entire Oz —Turkish love affair, particularly Ankara’s support of ISIS, he may lose too — and will deserve it.

David Boyajian is an Armenian-American freelance journalist. His primary foreign policy focus is the Caucasus. Many of his articles are archived at www.armeniapedia.org/wiki/David_Boyajian.

For his previous essays at Gates of Vienna, see the David Boyajian Archives.

14 thoughts on “Double Trouble: Dr. Mehmet Oz and Turkey

  1. Oz and Goonie Sloth! Oh my.
    Did Ozzo toss Trump under the bus yet and what’s with all the foreigners? (honk!)
    And all of this Circus Circus from the home (PA) of the Dementia King Brandon who has ruled that only 8 rounds per magazine in order to enhance unity.
    How about that democracy, comrade.
    Honk, honk!

  2. So who do you prefer? Stalin or Lenin? Oz is definitely not a perfect candidate but the marxists must be beaten. Oz will not be able to mob together with other turks in Congress. Fetterman is another red who has never worked in his life. A disgusting individual and another soldier for the democrat machine. For now, this election, the enemy of my enemy is my friend. If you don’t vote for Oz, at least look at it as a vote against the International Communist candidate.

    • Faced with the Lenin/Stalin choice, it’s Stalin for me. Aside from a destructive civil war, Lenin left no legacy. At least Stalin’s public works projects were worthwhile, and benefit the people to this day.

  3. Pennsylvania has a choice:

    A brain dead life loser who is a Cultural Marxist but is more disabled than Biden

    Or a Muslim traitor just as bad as Tlaib and Omar but slicker.

  4. @ JG III,

    Reminds me of the “illusion of choice” cartoon featuring the sheep in the slaughter pens, there is a right and left path but they only lead to the abattoir.

  5. Many sitting senators and congressmen hold dual passports. Maybe this one Mohammedan can change the dynamics of the stranglehold Israel has on the US Treasury, education and destructive gender changing ideology forced upon young gentile children.

  6. As an European its funny for me when a citizen of a terror-supporting state (USA) is worried about the loyality of a citizen of another terror supporting state (Turkey)

      • the US is the terrorist state itsself
        -invading other countries on the opposite end of the globe, supported by hypermoralistic lies and manufactured assertments (eg. irak and the WMD lie) and causing hundreds of thousands if not millions of deaths there.
        -bombarding european cities like Belgrade
        -supporting nasty evil regimes like Pakistan and Saudi Arabia
        -sponsoring facist ukraine and
        -helping to suppress conservative and right wing movements in Europe (eg the FPÖ in Austria)
        -and so on – the list of Americas evil deeds is endless

  7. After the so called debate between the so called young “Turk” and the communist zombie the good people of Pennsylvania have no choice but hope for the best and vote for Oz.

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